Sunday, May 11, 2008

When Your Boss Finds Out You Are a Double Agent

Are you working as a Gen-Y double agentI am an advocate of working towards your career goals while working a stable 9-5 to sustain your life, your wife, your house, car payments and a beer when you get 5 minutes of free time. I don't just preach to the choir, I live it.

I play a great role at the 9-5, keeping everyone in tune with everything going on in our company's online world, the economy, cool Social Media and marketing tips and making their clients happy by applying on site SEO to their packages.

When I get out the doors, usually at 5:01, I put on a new suit, and usually a backwards hat! I jet down and swerve through the great traffic that is I-4 and get to the after hours office. I then proceed to make my life interesting and attempt to go at it on my own (and with the help from some more than amazing team members).

I try as hard as humanly possible not to inter-twine the 2 lives. Well, I do check non work emails at work and live off my Twitter feeds, but hey, there is time to kill in an entry level position, right?

So what happens when your boss finds out about all of your post work activities?

I cannot speak for everyone on this one, unfortunately. I am very lucky to have a cool boss, who also doubles as my guitar player when I decide to bust a few rhymes. He was very excited and happy for me and really hopes that the projects I am working on are going to be greatly successful. There is also the factor that my work at the 9-5 never slips. In fact I make sure to kick ass everyday so there is no doubt where my head is at during clock hours.

Here's a few tips that have helped me in my double agent status for those that are looking are are in the middle of working for a corporation with bigger dreams of going at in on your own.

1. Keep up productivity.
While I do make time to check my non work emails and browse a few choice blogs, I also kick ass in my assignments. I am still coming up with productive ideas and staying sharp with all of my clients and colleagues. This is vital. Once your daily work starts to suffer, you may be in trouble.

2. Understand your boss.
I have a cool boss. He gets business done, but is also understanding and knows that work, and this job isn't the end-all-be-all of life. Maybe your boss or supervisor is the opposite, either way get to know how they handle situations.

3. If possible, be honest.
The last few weeks I have shown up red-eyed and wrinkled. Rather than think I was hitting the bong on the way to work, I stayed after on a Friday and showed my boss what I was up to. This happened to be the jamblr site and blog. He was totally impressed with the work, understood what I was up to and offered to give me a few days off if needed to talk to potential investors. He is also trying to get me to make a video similar to the "what is jamblr" spot for our local job fairs. Pretty sweet for coming clean.

4. Know that they know.
I got a really cool gig this Friday. What did I do when I found out, I hit up Twitter and told all my followers the good news. The bad news, my Facebook status is updated by my Twitter feed. Boss checks his Facebook, and poof, there's my news all over his homepage. Damn!

5. Understand your non-compete's and NDA's.
If you signed a non-compete at your current job, be sure that your new venture does not interfere. This will get you in a heap of trouble and legal issues with your current employer. Also be sure that you are not using company materials and policies when starting your new company.

It's great for Gen-Y to be so active in seeking out there own path and starting their own ventures in their own niche. It's also a smart option to have a stable income while doing so. Just be sure if you are on company time, you are staying in line with what is expected of you. I would hope that your employer would promote career growth, whether its within their organization or out on your own. They don't want you entry-level forever either. That's for next year's graduating class.

-Greg Rollett


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